Coming out of Hijab

I remember when my mother sat me down and told me it was time to wear the hijab full-time. I don’t recall having much of a reaction because I knew the day was coming, and in a way, I thought I was mentally prepared. I was about 12 years old and at the beginning stages of puberty, and I really had no clue what I was getting myself into.

I initially began wearing a hijab with the correct intentions and reasoning. I knew wearing the hijab was a sacrifice I made for Allah(SWT), and I would seek the rewards in the afterlife, insha’Allah. In the meantime, middle school was not the best stage of my life, and being the only hijabi did not help the situation. I was going through a very awkward phase with my body, from chubby to skinny, and my face was filled with acne. Looking at the rest of the girls using their hair and revealing clothes, well uniforms to help enhance their beauty, I felt like the ugly duckling. The only thing the hijab did was highlight my imperfections and make me stand out.

One thing I did learn with age and maturity, wearing a hijab is not just placing a piece of fabric on top of your head and covering your hair; you also need to dress modestly as well. That was actually a hard lesson for me to understand. I could never fully wrap my mind around covering my arms and other clothing requirements.

As a result, in high school, I began to ask questions and do research for myself. Wearing the hijab was still in my heart, and I loved being a hijabi. Still, I realized it was no longer for the love and sacrifice I was making for Allah(SWT). Still, instead, it was for the identity and style I created for myself in hijab. I spent my senior year of high school researching modesty and hijab in Islam, formed a new definition, and was ready to step out of my comfort zone.

I decided to become an improved version of myself in the next chapter of my life. I wanted to impact the world around me and make a difference in my community. Knowing and valuing the lessons and principles I learned as a Muslimah, modesty was still essential. I finally came to terms with my definition and realized wearing a hijab may not be a part of it. I was ready to test my new theory and experience life without the hijab.

I may no longer wear hijab or clothing that covers my body, but my actions and how I portray myself to the world are how I am a modest Muslimah. I care more about how I carry myself and treat people around me than what I wear or don’t wear on my body. The question of whether or not Muslim women are required to wear a hijab will always be debated. Who knows, maybe one day I’ll be back in hijab. Regardless, I am still a proud Muslimah and happy with my decision.


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